In my explorations of peace and food, I’ve become aware of a whole era and subject matter that we’ve hitherto overlooked… wartime food propaganda. The following is a series of posters from (mostly) North America during the First and Second World Wars. I won’t say much, except that I find the language incredibly potent, the links between war and food outrageous, and the fear-mongering unconscionable. And Victory Gardens are precursors to the modern-day community garden. Just saying.
Read more about the Women’s Land Army here.
This last image is less about food and more about woman, and her depiction as an important player in the war economy, working ‘men’s jobs,’ contributing to the war effort, etc, but somehow it still speaks to me of the ‘arming’ or militarization of the home economy. Food growing, preparing, and consuming become sites of violence and the kerchiefed woman appears as the muscled aggressor. Though this image was originally created to motivate women workers in an Ann Arbour factory during the war, it later became adopted widely by the women’s movement as a symbol of women’s empowerment. Does it grab anyone reading this in the way it grabs me? Or is it just its suggestive inclusion in the rest of these food+war materials that brings one’s mind to this place?